The fundraising process can mystify the best entrepreneurs. From targeting the right investors, seeking connections for introductions, to research and prepare for coveted investor meetings — finding the perfect fit is a lot easier said than done.
As Y Combinator co-founder and investor Paul Graham suggests, “Raising money is the second hardest part of starting a startup. The hardest part is making something people want: most startups that die, die because they didn’t do that. But the second biggest cause of death is probably the difficulty of raising money. Fundraising is brutal.”
So, in order to ease your startup fundraising pains here are twelve articles every entrepreneur should read:
Entrepreneurs have the unique ability to take their business idea and visualize the enormous multinational corporation it will become. They have a mental blueprint of the entire company from logistics to customer service to marketing and sales. In fact, the future of the business is so vivid and real to the founder that they sometimes have trouble relaying that information to others. And in order to get people interested in your business, it is your duty to enthrall and enlighten them.
As you can probably imagine, going through this process involves taking a step back from the day-to-day work and looking at our overall strategy and evolution. Fundraising forces you to come up with a coherent way to explain your business model to someone unfamiliar with the concept. You have to show what sparked your idea, articulate the problem you are solving, demonstrate progress, such as genuine market adoption, and present your longer term vision.
When an entrepreneur has decided to attract the interest of a venture capital (VC) firm, the last thing that should happen is a blown opportunity. Venture capitalists have been around the block a few times and know what a company needs in order to succeed. It is your job to convince a venture capitalist that his or her investment will be profitable. To that end, I offer the following tips.
So, you think your business idea is cool? You will have no problem pitching it to a potential investor or venture capitalist, right?! Or maybe you believe your startup enjoys some type of momentary monopoly because you’re the only company doing what you do? Not so fast!
In my observations, and experience raising a million-dollar seed round in 2012, I learned that investors usually end up focusing on three very specific areas of your business. So, to maximize your chances of securing venture capital, here are three questions your VC pitch deck should answer…
Do you need to find an investor for your startup or small business? Fundraising is not an easy feat. Since most entrepreneurs are novices when it comes to pitching investors, it’s important to start with the basics and learn how to select the best investor for your business.
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